Monday, March 27, 2006

Today, I want to share this compelling story from Kenya with you. Hollye Conway has given me permission to print this. When I first read this email, I was reminded of the scripture, "in as much as you have done it to the least of these ... you have done it unto me." Here is Hollye's description of her Mondays!

I first met baby t. when she was 3 weeks old...the large, bright whites of her eyes stood out in contrast to her ebony skin...she was tiny, scrawny, but her eyes would find yours and lock.

usually when you pick up a tiny baby your instinct is to enfold it close to your heart... I did not have the slightest inclination to do so with baby was more like an awkward 10 year old boy having to hold a baby in front of his friends...kinda at a distance from his body with his head turned the opposite direction... i love babies,...i love to cuddle babies ... but this baby reeked, this baby was swaddled in her mother's old sweatshirt, and a piece of cloth with stains from everything she had come in contact with over the past 3 weeks ... remember no diapers ... & .. she had not been bathed.

why not bathed, you ask? ..."bases" or trash heaps where her mother lives do not have the luxury of a bathtub, much less any water tap of any kind ... the closest water source would be the raw sewage that runs past the base... also her mother has to beg for food, coins, etc for survival ..which looks more pathetic, a filthy baby or a clean baby?

a ritual began that day...darlene, mama dennis and i took baby t, heated up water, bathed her, bought her a diaper and a little clean each monday baby t. gets a bath, lotion and clean we hold her close, kiss on her little cheeks and whisper love messages into her ear ...
as she contently sucks her fingers ... baby t. is 4 months old now and our ritual continues...

not a week has gone by though when we have removed the putrid, stained, crusty clothes from her body and placed her in the warm sudsy water that i have not thanked Jesus for doing that very same favor to me over the past week ... removing that odorous, repulsive garb of filth that makes me want to squirm out of it... and placing His clean robe of righteousness upon my undeserving shoulders...

to grasp the full impact of gratitude I feel each week, you would have to join me one monday to watch the baby t. transformation.... you are welcome!